I am a Hall Buddy in our building, which means that I am responsible for showing my room to tour groups and talking briefly about the Manresa Program and life in Loyola Hall. When talking with prospective students, I always emphasize the community and how all of us living in Loyola have grown to become a second family. As sentimental as that may sound, I truly believe it.
As my first year comes to a close, I have started to look back fondly at my Loyola family memories, and some of these memories come from my time hanging out on the floor below me, specifically in Fr. Phil’s apartment. Fr. Phil Florio, S.J., is the resident Jesuit and our house master. The religious and non-religious alike have gotten to know him over the past two semesters, and there is a group of us that has grown accustomed to visiting with him some nights, which we have unofficially named “Tea Tuesdays.”
Particularly on, but not limited to, Tuesday nights, we are welcomed into Fr. Phil’s living room, where we have tea and watch television shows like our personal favorite, Modern Family. Some nights we skip the TV and just have conversations about everything from spiritual life to Fordham history to pop culture. The most memorable Tuesday was when twenty of us, Fr. Phil included, broke down into an impromptu performance of “Bohemian Rhapsody.”
The door is left open and people are free to come and go as they please, but everyone seems to have stopped by at one point or another over the year. Through hanging out with my fellow residents in there, I have come to meet many more people outside of my immediate friend group, and it has been wonderful getting to know not only a Jesuit priest but many people that I will remember forever. This is certainly not your typical residential experience, and I feel that our ability to come together as a community through academics, residential hall programs, and the little, unplanned events like Tea Tuesday is something highly unique to the Manresa program and the college experience.
Julianna Larwood, GSB 2018
Manresa Scholar and 2015-2016 Live-in Student Tutor